Dinah Jams and After Hours With Miss D are Dinah Washington’s jazziest albums as the singer cuts loose with a solid cast of jazz all-stars.Continue reading Dinah Washington: Two Gems from the Mercury Years
Following the success of her signature recording Something Cool, originally recorded in 1953 as a ten inch and supplemented in ’55 with additional tracks for LP release, June Christy cut a number of long-playing albums with a loosely-based concept. The LP was still in its infancy, and many singers and musicians were experimenting with the form, creating new and interesting settings for the songs they performed and allowing the listener a more atmospheric listening experience.
by Marshall Bowden
Luciana Souza is a singer who takes more than a passing interest in the words that she is singing. Previous projects have revolved around poetry and literature: The Poems of Elizabeth Bishop and Other Songs (2000) and Neruda (2004) were based, respectively, on the work of Elizabeth Bishop, an American poet who lived in Brazil for nearly two decades and Chilean poet Pablo Neruda.
Souza’s newest album, The Book of Longing takes its title from Leonard Cohen’s 2006 collection of poetry. She sets the titular poem to music in a track called “The Book.” She adapts Cohen’s tribute to departed singer Carl Anderson, “Nightingale” as “Night Song.” She also takes on Edna St. Vincent Millay’s “Alms”, a sweet melancholy poem about the seasons of love, Emily Dikinson’s “We Grow Accustomed to the Dark,” and Rosetti’s “Remember.” And there are four of Luciana’s own lyrics set to music that is conceived and arranged by her.Continue reading Luciana Souza: The Book of Longing
by Marshall Bowden
Continue reading Too Cool For Words: June Christy and Something Cool
“Something cool…I’d like to order something cool” says the dame in the smoky, slightly seedy bar that is something out of a Raymond Chandler story. The kind of place where maybe there could be trouble at any moment; where maybe a couple of guys in raincoats with noses as crooked as a gerrymandered voting district come in and start asking questions. And that can’t be anything but trouble for you.